Caricatures are fine, satirical art is fine, it is when there is no distinction between what is acceptable and what is blatant ignorance when it comes to the decisions being made regarding such actions. Violence is in no shape or form okay or right, violence is not something to joke about especially when there are REAL people who are affected by said violence.
After the GRAMMYS Awards that took place on 14th March, a trading card company named Topps unveiled a new “Garbage Pail Kids collection” that featured some of the biggest performers from the GRAMMY night as the characteristically funky looking sticker cards with nicknames to boost.
The hilariously titled “Shammy Awards” collection features a host of nominees for the award, which include artist like Taylor Swift as “Tree Swift”, Bruno Mars as “Lars Mars”, Megan Thee Stallion as “Stunning Stallion”, Harry Style as “Harry Boa” among others.
As satirical as the intentions of the artist/s is, BTS ARMY are not taking it lightly at the way BTS has been depicted. BTS Art is titled “BTS Bruisers” and “K-POP Boppers” The fans are questioning why only BTS is depicted in such a violent way with bruises when all the other artists are not.
In BTS’ collection, the caricature depicted BTS being brutally beaten with a Grammy trophy, bruised and in pain, similar to the arcade game Whack-A-Mole, a totall contrast to the other artists which were more light-hearted caricatures.
They take the issue to the fact that violence against Asians has been on the increase especially since the pandemic. And just recently a radio journalist had said racially and xenophobic remarks against BTS on his radio who said that he was joking and making ironical remarks.
BTS Army’s are not having it, terming the whole art as distasteful and not satirical at all. They are demanding action from the company, due to the ongoing events in relation to Asians.
Here are some comments from the fans that speak of their distaste in the caricatures and want action, as it is not clear how these were approved without a second thought it everything that has been going on.
“Taylor Swift has 41 grammy noms and only 11 wins – no violent caricatures
Ariana Grande has 12 grammy noms and only 2 wins – no mocking headlines
Lady Gaga has 29 grammy noms and only 12 wins – no using her for ratings
Drake has 47 grammy noms and only 4 wins – no disrespect”
“I understand that the garbage pail kids are satire but this is taking it to far. All the other artist are depicted without violence but why did you depict BTS with bruises and being beaten up. There has been a rise in violence against Asians and this card supports“
“The thought that it is ok to direct violence towards Asians. This is in no way satire. This is a gross misconduct on your behalf and I hope that this gets taken care of ASAP.”
“Appauling!!! 😡 Honestly I cannot believe this was approved after the current attacks on the Asia communities across our nation. How is it no one else in this is being illustrated with a violent act? Hmmm…you should be better than this!”
“How the B/T/S card actually made it to production is beyond belief! The other artists are portrayed/parodied quite differently..to show the single asian group beaten and brutalized is beyond irresponsible. You really missed the mark #StopAsianHate #AsiansAreHuman“
“At a time when there are new headlines practically daily of Anti-Asian hate crimes in the US, your company thought it was a good idea to depict the Asian nominees as being brutalized and beaten for a “joke” … and none of you put two and two together why that was trash?”
“Now would be a good time to find their sponsors and the people who green lit this. Time to start taking out the money. Editors designers etc”
“It’s NOT acceptable to portray BTS with violance theme when racism induced violance against Asian on the rise.”
“This is disgusting behavior that NOT even slightly funny.”
“WE UNDERSTAND SATIRE! But ya’ll need to OPEN YOUR EYES and look the eff around what is going on around the world right now! Asian people are facing HATE CRIMES and getting PHYSICALLY ASSAULTED! Ya’ll think this cover was an appropriate one AT THIS MOMENT? Kidding me? 😡 #BTSARMY“
“and a really good creative / illustrator can find other ways to relay the same message without resorting to such a triggering visualization — and expect to sell said artwork.“
There is a very thin line between being responsible and outright negligent. How far did the whole process of making the caricature reach before someone pointed out that it was wrong in all aspects, even if not aesthetically but morally?